Are Bears the worst 4-1 team in decades? One stat says it's close originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago
There's a niche corner of Sports Discourse that focuses exclusively on things that, quite frankly, don't matter at all (And there's probably a good argument to be made that it's not even that niche.) A pitcher's win-loss record doesn't matter; game-by-game schedule predictions don't matter; the Jordan-LeBron debate doesn't matter.
So before we get any deeper, reader, I just want to make things clear: the following stat, in all likelihood, doesn't matter. Please be cool:
As promised, here are the worst 4-1 teams in DVOA history (since 1985). This isn't necessarily bad news for Chicago, most of these teams ended up making the playoffs and some (ATL 1995 and 1998) improved significantly after their "slow starts." #DaBears pic.twitter.com/olNOwk12Z7— Aaron Schatz 🏈 (@FO_ASchatz) October 12, 2020
For the uninitiated, DVOA stands for "Defense-adjusted Value Over Average." The brainchild of analytics-based site Football Outsiders, DVOA "breaks down the entire season play-by-play, comparing success on each play to the league average based on a number of variables including down, distance, location on field, current score gap, quarter, and opponent quality."
So not only does a widely-respected catch-all stat think the 2020 Bears are the 2nd-worst 4-1 team since 1985 (!!), but the only team "worse" than them are the 2010 Bears (!!!). You may feel anger in this moment.
The good news is that 7 of the 9 teams in this chart made the playoffs, so even the worst 4-1 teams typically fare pretty well. But don't let a stat that, remember, probably doesn't matter stand in your way of being angry. That's what Sports Discourse is all about.